The Stream, June 24: Landslides A Growing Problem In Northern India

The Global Rundown

Changing rainfall patterns are one factor behind an uptick in deadly landslides in India’s Jammu and Kashmir state. Despite the start of the monsoon, water levels in reservoirs across India remain below average. Standing water due to inadequate drainage could increase the spread of a yellow fever outbreak in Kinshasa, the capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Floods in Paris earlier this month showcased improvements in the city’s disaster response, but it is still not ready for a major 100-year flood, according to officials. Water in Flint, Michigan, when properly filtered, is now safe to drink for children and pregnant women, the government said.

“It’s not a question of if there will be a flood but when. And that’s about as much as we know.” –Colombe Brossel, assistant to the mayor of Paris, on the need to improve preparations for a 100-year flood that could arrive at any time. A bout of flooding occurred earlier this month when the river Seine reached a level of 6.10 meters. (Guardian)

By The Numbers

15 percent of capacity Current water levels in major reservoirs across India. Despite the start of the monsoon this month, reservoir levels remain below their 10-year average for this time of year. Reuters

Science, Studies, And Reports

An outbreak of yellow fever in Angola has killed 345 people and is spreading into the Democratic Republic of Congo, where the World Health Organization is racing to protect residents with a limited number of vaccines. The mosquito-borne disease is a particular threat in Kinshasa, the DRC capital, where its spread could be exacerbated by stagnant water that provides breeding habitat for the insects. Reuters

On The Radar

A growing number of people are being displaced by landslides in Jammu and Kashmir in northern India, resulting in economic hardship and mental health problems. Scientists say deforestation, earthquakes, development, and changing rainfall patterns have nearly doubled the number of landslides in the region over the past two decades. Reuters

Properly filtered water in Flint, Michigan is now safe to drink for pregnant women and children, according to the latest update from federal officials. The city’s drinking water was contaminated with dangerously high levels of lead after managers temporarily switched to a new water source in 2014. Reuters